Selectivity Bank with Enhanced Re-Sequencing Capability: Design and Control Algorithm
Publication Date: 2012-Aug-17
The IP.com Prior Art Database
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Selectivity Bank with Bi-Directional Storage Lanes and a Bypass Lane
At an automotive assembly plant, a selectivity bank (SB) is a re-sequencing buffer employed to change the sequence of vehicles coming out of the plant's paint area into the trim & final assembly area. A typical SB consists of n lanes each having capacity of storing m vehicle bodies. A decision algorithm at the input point determines to which of those lanes a vehicle that just left the paint area should be sent for storage, and a decision algorithm at the SB's exit point determines from which of the lanes a vehicle should be selected for sending downstream to the final assembly line.
We propose a selectivity bank with bi-directional storage lanes and a unidirectional bypass lane. Bi- directionality of the storage lanes allows to pick a vehicle for sending downstream not only from the lane's front end but also from the lane's back end, and also allows to store the vehicle not only to the lane's back end but also to the lane's front end. In addition, we propose a policy (implemented in a microprocessor controller unit) that, in case a storage lane has two or more units in storage, moves the last vehicle unit of that storage lane into the backmost position of that lane (this policy facilitates quicker extraction of a unit from the back of a lane).
The following diagrams shows a sample configuration of a sequencing buffer with five (5) bi-directional storage lanes, each of capacity five (5) units, and one unidirectional "bypass" lane. Every circle
represents a vehicle. The general flow of vehicles is from left to right. We call the leftmost ends of the lanes their "backs", and the rightmost ends of the lanes their "fronts". The diagram on the left shows the initial state. For example, lane 4 presently stores four vehicles. Especially note that the leftmost unit 'E' in lane 4 is in the position closest to the back of the lane, so that there is an empty space in front of 'E'; this makes extraction of
'E' from the back of lane 4 quicker.
If we want to invert the order of the incoming vehicles 'A' and 'B' we could operate as follows (where red lin...